Report – November 2014

Habitat management work on Ashlawn Nature Reserve. by Phil Parr

Work on the reserves grasslands went very well this autumn. We cut and raked off the grassland to keep the nutrient base of the soils low to encourage wild flowers and to restrain woody species such as Hawthorn, Ash, & Bramble from taking over. We planned and achieved getting all this work done by Christmas. We can now concentrate on woodland and hedge management. The weather this year was on our side and there were only one or two occasions when it was too wet.

It takes a lot to stop us!

We were very pleased to have another visit from the Trusts Nature-Force team of very able volunteers. They meet at Brandon, jump into the minibus and head for a reserve within the county that need’s their help. On this occasion they made great progress cutting our Section 9 grasslands and extending, tidying and dead hedging the woodland glade Section 7 – both between the Pytchley and Ashlawn  bridges.

Thanks very much all of you, we are most grateful for your help.

Fortunately we had done most of the work before Steve, our chief brushcutter operator damaged his arm elsewhere. Gerry stepped into the breach and soon got the hang of things while Margaret, Jan, Cyril, David, Ken, Phil and others tried to keep up with the raking and carrying.

The quality of the grasslands structure has shown a definite improvement over the last few years and wild flower numbers increased as a result of all this effort.